• June

      9

      2013
    • 1841
    • 0

    A great graphic explanation of the Living Building Challenge

    The Living Building Challenge is the toughest green standard out there, but it is seriously gaining traction as people get to understand it. I have tried to explain how it works (see a short version in Is the Bullitt Center the World’s Greenest Building?) but it is tough to wrap your ……

    • June

      9

      2013
    • 2053
    • 0

    ‘ The Greenest Home ‘ : A Window on 18 Super – Eco Dream Houses – The Great Energy Challenge

    The Greenest Home : A Window on 18 Super – Eco Dream Houses The Great Energy Challenge What is a passive house ? “Simply said,” Moskovitz writes, “a Passive House is a building that is very well insulated, virtually airtight, and primarily heated by the sun.” The interior temperature is designed to stay at 68 degrees Fahrenheit, and to …

    • August

      22

      2012
    • 1471
    • 0

    Zero Net-Energy Ready Homes to be Certified by Energy Department Partnership

    For people who think Passive House is a Fad.

    On Monday, August 20, the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) announced a newpartnership between the DOE Challenge Homeprogram and the Passive House Institute US to cooperate on the promotion of various levels of high-performance buildings on the path to zero net-energy.

    This news is a huge development for the passive house community and for PHIUS. The endorsement of PHIUS+ passive house certification through the DOE instantly makes passive house the most energy efficient option for builders, designers and developers who want to achieve a zero energy building. This recognition will go a long way toward making passive house mainstream.

    This took a lot of time and effort, and we owe thanks to Sam Rashkin, Chief Architect at the DOE, whose knowledge, vision and determination were critical to the effort. (Sam was the keynote at last year’s North American Passive House Conference.)

    So, how does this partnership change current PHIUS+ passive house certification and what do consultants need to know?

    In a nutshell: not much. A passive house already fulfills most of the Challenge Home requirements – certification essentially remains the same process with a few minor additions! Those additions are very good improvements, making the home even better. Indoor air quality requirements ask for low VOC materials and the water efficiency requirements establish a reasonable savings baseline, all good things.

    The Challenge Home requires rigorous third-party, on-site verification, which already is part of PHIUS+. PHIUS+ certified RESNET Raters already use an advanced passive house checklist created specifically for passive houses. (This testing protocol is actually more rigorous than the one the Challenge Home is using.)

    What Challenge Home brings to the table that PHIUS+ did not before is a more formalized exterior water management and flashing checklist. Having seen quite a few bad water management details during certification so far, we are happy to add a more formalized process to assure the long term durability of the house. QAQC is crucial to assure quality in execution, actual performance and peace of mind for the client we found.

    • April

      15

      2012
    • 1593
    • 0

    A new Living Building Challenge: Community-scale retrofitting

    Green building might be little more than a fringe hippie idea if not for certification. The medals and honors now available through rating systems have enabled a good and altruistic effort to become a highly marketable quality. LEED – Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design – is now the most well-known and well-used certification system, claiming nearly 9 billion square feet of space participating in its various certification programs globally. But it’s not alone, and it’s not necessarily the greenest of the green. The relatively new Living Building Challenge has been steadily gathering fans in the green building community for tougher-than-LEED standards such as net-zero energy and net-zero water.

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Costs of Custom Homes

The first thing most people want to know is: What does it costs to build a 3000 sqft custom home in the Atlanta, GA. market?  The first thing you have to calculate is the square footage you want.  Once you have that, the numbers below give you a good starting point.

Adjusted Square Foot Calculation:

New Construction:

Renovations:

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